Bella Adeline Rubio was ready to enter the world, but there was a problem -- it was still 2013.
Her mother, Isabel Viramontes, 20, was determined to have the Fresno area's first baby of the new year at Clovis Community Medical Center. Little Bella didn't appear to be cooperating.
But Viramontes -- wearing a festive Happy New Year tiara -- managed to hold off as the clock struck midnight and 2013 gave way to 2014. A minute later, with her party tiara still on her head, she gave birth to her firstborn, who measured 19 inches tall and weighed 7 pounds, 5 ounces.
"Last night it was like teamwork," Viramontes said Wednesday morning. "The doctors and I were working together to make sure it was happening."
That includes Dr. Sharon Kopacz, who has worked 10 New Year's Eves in the past 13 years but never had the honor of delivering the new year's first baby.
"I was looking forward to this," Kopacz said.
The honor nearly wasn't hers. Bella arrived at 12:01 a.m., just edging out a boy who was born a minute later at Madera Community Hospital, prompting a bit of skepticism in Madera: Was Bella born by Caesarean section?
It was all natural, Kopacz said.
"It's her first baby, so we didn't know she'd push the baby out so fast, but she did."
At sunrise on New Year's Eve, however, Viramontes seemed an unlikely candidate to give birth to the region's first baby. She was in labor, so she came to Clovis Community at 6 a.m. It was the due date. Birth seemed near.
But by 11 a.m., Viramontes was only halfway to the point where the baby would be ready to deliver. She went home.
When she came back at 6 p.m., she was entertaining thoughts of producing a New Year's baby -- the year's first baby.
But she was already dilated to seven centimeters, just three short of the point of full dilation, and midnight was still six hours away. Hospital personnel immediately put Viramontes in a room and began preparations for the delivery.
"The doctor actually came in and wanted to break my water," Viramontes said. "I told her no."
Bella's father, Genaro Rubio, was ready to go.
"I kind of wanted to get it over with fast," the 19-year-old said. "When we got here, I wanted her to get induced and stuff, but she was the one who was just striving towards" the new year's first baby.
So he was on board with waiting. So were Viramontes' grandmother, best friend, and her mom, Patricia Torres, all on hand to watch the birth.
Everyone was wearing festive Happy New Year tiara-hats, and the room had a party-like atmosphere, Viramontes said. It was just the way she wanted it.
Around 11:30 p.m., with Viramontes fully dilated, medical staff broke her water. From that point, things moved fast.
But at 10 minutes to midnight, Kopacz was called out of the room to deliver another baby. She wondered if she'd get back in time. Eight minutes later, she was back.
"It was all very happy, exciting," Kopacz said. "Thirteen years I've been trying to get this."
And the other mom, who Kopacz was called away to help at 11:50? She "wasn't as motivated" as Viramontes to hold on until midnight, Kopacz said.
By Wednesday morning, Viramontes looked relaxed. Bella was alert and attentive, seemingly taking in all the media attention.
"She's a good baby," Viramontes said. "She just cries when she's hungry. She's really calm. Doesn't cry much."
Rubio -- who said he and Viramontes, both Sunnyside High graduates, plan to get married -- was floored by the experience.
"It's just amazing to experience having a baby with someone you really love," he said. "It was just kind of surreal to me, the whole experience, but it's amazing."
Meanwhile, the realization that she is now a mommy was still sinking in for Viramontes. "So many thoughts were just running through my mind, like this baby is actually mine. I still can't believe this."
First babies around the Valley
12:01 a.m. -- Clovis Community Medical Center, Clovis, girl
12:02 a.m. -- Madera Community Hospital, Madera, boy
2:21 a.m. -- Saint Agnes Medical Center, Fresno, boy
3:18 a.m. -- Sierra View District Hospital, Porterville, girl
3:39 a.m. -- Kaweah Delta Medical Center, Visalia, girl
4:30 a.m. -- Adventist Medical Center -- Hanford, girl
6:30 a.m. -- Tulare District Hospital, Tulare, boy
6:54 a.m. -- Adventist Medical Center -- Reedley, boy
1:34 p.m. -- Adventist Medical Center -- Selma, boy
As of 8 p.m. Wednesday, Kaiser Permanente Medical Center in Fresno had not delivered a New Year's baby.
The reporter can be reached at (559) 441-6320, email@example.com or @johnellis24 on Twitter.